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Randall Park Rips Hollywood For 'Taking The Wrong Lessons' From The Success of 'Barbie'

The actor called out Mattel for their announcement of a swath of toy-based movies after the 'Barbie' movie's monster success.

Randall Park Rips Hollywood For 'Taking The Wrong Lessons' From The Success of 'Barbie'
Roy Rochlin/Getty Images; Warner Bros. Pictures

By all measures, the Barbie movie has been a record-breaking phenomenon, and according to Fresh Off The Boat star Randall Park, Hollywood has learned nothing from its blockbuster success.

Greta Gerwig's film is quite literally historic after its most recent weekend's box office, which made it the highest-grossing movie domestically in the entire 100-year history of Warner Bros. Pictures, besting Christopher Nolan's The Dark Knight—which held the top spot for 15 years.

Given that monumental success, you'd think the takeaway would be to release more movies for and by women, right?

But that is absolutely not the moral Hollywood seems to have gleaned from this summer's blockbusters, rushing to make more movies about toys. And while speaking to Rolling Stone, Park called out the industry for completely missing the point.

During an interview promoting Park's directorial debut Shortcomings, Park said of Barbie's impact on Hollywood:

"This industry is taking the wrong lessons."
"For example, 'Barbie' is this massive blockbuster, and the idea is: Make more movies about toys! No. Make more movies by and about women!"

Barbie's success came alongside the more subdued but nonetheless runaway success of Nolan's Oppenheimer, with the two films' simultaneous releases kicking off their own cultural phenomenon, "Barbenheimer."

That would seem to indicate that, at long last, we finally know what the movie-going public wants: more movies for and by women, yes, but also? Just good movies with good stories, good casts, and made by good filmmakers.

Oppenheimer's success is owed largely to the hordes of people who clamored to see both films, after all, with theaters all over the country having double feature events.

Instead, at least in Warner Bros.' case, they have elected to green light a whopping 14 other toy-themed movies using Mattel's products as centerpieces, including “Barney,” “Masters of the Universe,” “Thomas and Friends," and “American Girl."

There's also a Vin Diesel-led "Rock 'Em Sock 'Em Robots" movie in the works and a "Polly Pocket" adaptation slated to be directed by Lena Dunham and to star Lily Collins.

On social media many people applauded Park for correctly identifying the problem in Hollywood.

The soft successes of some super-hero and comic book-themed movies suggest audiences are tiring of the constant reiterations of those genres.

Now Hollywood seems poised to have people screaming "enough with the toy movies!" in the coming years instead. Seems they'll just never learn.